Mbuthuma Eyes World Championship Gold

by | May 8, 2020

Nedbank Running Club’s Fikile Mbuthuma celebrates 15 years of marathon running this year and she says she is hungrier than ever to achieve at the highest level, with World Championship gold and a Top 5 Comrades Marathon finish on her bucket list.

Mbuthuma is highly rated with many believing she has what is takes to win the Comrades Marathon, following her historic gold medal in the 2016 edition to become the first black female top 10 finisher since Sarah Mahlangu’s seven placed finish in 2002.

Her running heroes are the legendary duo of Farwa Mentoor and the late Riana van Niekerk whose performances inspired her to dream big.

Mbuthuma is employed at the Prime Human Performance Institute at Moses Mabhida Stadium, which helps athletes achieve their best, something she is passionate about.

She spoke to Kass Naidoo about her journey to date and how she plans to achieve even more in marathon running.

 

Fikile, thank you for talking to gsport. How did you find out about the initiative and what made you follow @gsport4girls on Twitter?

I saw a page on Facebook and on Twitter talking about all women’s sports and I like and follow it. I started following gsport4girls because it’s the only page I have seen that’s interested in women in sport.

 

How has the Covid-19 lockdown impacted you and how are you managing during this time?

The lockdown has a huge impact on the world especially as runners. During this hard time, I want to thank my club, Nedbankrunning Club, for always being there for us, and the support they are giving us.

 

What ways are you using to keep fit while staying at home?

I do a lot of strength training and running in my yard. Thanks to Prime HPC KZN and my club for giving me a home program.

“My passion for running started at the early age while I was still in Primary school.” – Nedbank Running Club’s Fikile Mbuthuma

 

Where does your passion for running come from?

Kass, my passion for running started at the early age while I was still in Primary school.

 

When did you decide to take it seriously?

I started training for marathons back in 2004 and my first marathon was in 2005.

 

When did you join the Nedbank running team and what is the experience like?

Geez, I started running for Nedbank club in 2008 when they first started till now. You can tell by the year’s I’ve been in this club, the support is beyond major. They treat their athletes like human beings. I’m am grateful for their support. It means a lot.

 

What have been some of your running highlights to date?

In my running journey, I have received a Gold medal in the Comrades Marathon in 2016 in 8th position, First black female to be in Top 10 since 2012, if I’m not mistaken. I represented South Africa in 100km world championship in Croatia 2018 and 2019. I went to Romania 50km world championship. I will say I have improved a lot in my running career and still hungry for more?.

 

What has running taught you?

Well, running has taught me something new every single day. Nothing is impossible if you are willing to work for it and there is no secret recipe for success. Take chances and dream big. I believe that running not only trains the body, but it also trains the mind.

 

Who are some of your other personal sponsors?

My Sponsors are Nedbank, Biogen SA, Nike, Futurelife, Bavaria, Prime HPC KZN, EADPKZN (Elite Athletes Development Program), KZN Department of Sport and Recreation.

 

When the lockdown is lifted, what races are you hoping to participate in?

Well, currently, there is no specific race. I still have to work on my fitness level after Lockdown

 

Who are your favourite sportswomen and why?

I’ve got a lot but I will mention two2. Farwa Mentoor and Late Rianna Van Nierkek. I use to watch them fight in the Comrades Marathon, and I told myself that one day I want to see myself there.

 

How would you describe the state of women’s sport in South Africa and what can we do to improve the state of the game for women?

Well, from my point of view, women in sport face many obstacles today, such as lower pay. Look at Banyana Banyana and Bafana Bafana… Publicity and Media Coverage, if we can get media coverage like our male counterparts, eg. Football and Boxing.

“My dream is to run London marathon and New York city marathon or one of those big races overseas.” – Fikile Mbuthuma

 

What are some of the races internationally that you would like to participate in?

My dream is to run London marathon and New York city marathon or one of those big races overseas.

 

What is your advice to young runners?

My advice to young runners/athletes – Training and talent are essential, so are mental toughness and self belief. Having a reason to believe that you can do today what you were incapable of doing yesterday is an incredibly powerful force, so that’s my piece of advice. What you are doing now, you must be 100 percent committed to it and believe in it.

 

What is your big running ambition that you would like to achieve?

My big ambition is to get at least Top 5 in Comrades Marathon and bring a Gold or Silver medal for my Country in the World Championship in near future, and help some of the young athletes.

 

 

Photo 1 Caption: Nedbank Running Club’s Fikile Mbuthuma celebrates 15 years of marathon running this year and she says she is hungrier than ever to achieve at the highest level, with World Championship gold and a Top 5 Comrades Marathon finish on her bucket list. Photo: Supplied

Photo 2 Caption: Mbuthuma is highly rated with many believing she has what is takes to win the Comrades Marathon, following her historic gold medal in the 2016 edition to become the first black female top 10 finisher since Sarah Mahlangu’s seven placed finish in 2002. Photo: Supplied

Photo 3 Caption: Her running heroes are the legendary duo of Farwa Mentoor and the late Riana van Niekerk whose performances inspired her to dream big. Photo: Supplied

Photo 4 Caption: Mbuthuma is employed at the Prime Human Performance Institute at Moses Mabhida Stadium, which helps athletes achieve their best, something she is passionate about. Photo: Supplied

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<a href="https://gsport.co.za/members/kass_naidoo/" target="_self">Kass Naidoo</a>

Kass Naidoo

Passionate sports broadcaster and founder of gsport4girls

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